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Author to speak on church anti-gay teachings

Tue 23 Oct 2012 In: New Zealand Daily News

Dr Stuart Edser Traditional church teachings on gay sexuality are "wrong, unjust and harmful" says a gay Christian psychologist who will speak at a Metropolitan Community Church service in Auckland this Sunday evening. Dr Stuart Edser is principal psychologist at a small private psychology practice in Newcastle, Australia. He has written a book, Being Gay, Being Christian "to spell out as a gay man, a psychologist and a long-standing Christian exactly why these teachings are wrong, how they are unjust and to describe the harm they cause good people, both gay and straight, and to the reputation of the Gospel." Edser was in his early years a Catholic seminarian and has experience within evangelical and pentecostal religions. He says his own journey to awareness of the reality of his sexuality began "when I was a young gay man in denial of my own sexuality, I suffered terribly at the hands of church teaching, inexorably leading me toward self-hatred, depression and suicidality as these teachings infused my life with a sense of guilt, shame and sin - all just for being gay." Whilst Edser has changed, the church has not, he says. "The church is virtually the only place left in society where you can denigrate gay people on the basis of their sexuality. Its traditional teachings actually affect all gay people whether they have a Christian faith, some other faith or no faith at all. This is not acceptable in the twenty-first century." He says his book, which he will discuss at the MCC meeting this Sunday evening, was written "for all gay people, those with and without Christian faith."    

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Tuesday, 23rd October 2012 - 1:12pm

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